Little Things: Super Light Chainring Bolts


here you can see the aftermarket crank rings and an original one.

Last year in fall my bike started making some mysterious popping noises.  My Dad advised me to check my crank bolts and as usual he was right.  I bought this Shimano crank last winter on ebay.  It had been customized with some red anodized aluminum crank bolts.  I imagine this may have added up to 50 grams of savings since the steel crank bolts are pretty heavy and the aftermarket ones weigh about 2 grams each. Of course steel crank bolts don’t break.

the crank with its last two red bolts, I'm sure the style police were not happy I rode it like that.

When I checked my crank bolts last fall I found that 3 of them were loose.  When I  tightened them they stripped with almost no force.  When I removed them it was easy to understand why, about 4 threads are catching the outer sleave.  I replaced the 3 bolts and that fixed the problem.

I’ve probably only ridden my road bike a hundred miles over the winter but when I was out this week I found it making the same noise.  The final two aluminum crank bolts had come loose and would not tighten and were replaced with original bolts.

So if you’re thinking of ways to save weight on your bike, I would not recomend token aluminum chainring bolts.


About Matt Gholson

Cycling, school teaching, husband.
This entry was posted in Bikes and components, Rants, Reviews and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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